Great Lakes MotorSports

Month: March, 2013

On Local Groups…

No, nothing to do with a cluster of galaxies. Instead, everything to do with clubs/geographic specific web forums/localized groups of people.

There’s one main thing you need to know. Timing is everything. That’s it. Just because you tried and failed 10 times before doesn’t mean anything about now. You (or somebody else) could possibly suddenly be successful with even less effort than was exerted in any previous attempt.

Now, how do you know the timing is right? Well, you can’t ever know for sure. It’s really just dumb luck. Except that once again this dumb luck is disguised as hard work. Do the hard work of continuing to push whatever your group may be. Don’t be afraid to make incremental changes names/styles/designs though. Keeping it fresh gives people new reasons to check in periodically and can increase your chance of success some. However, the primary influence on your success rate still comes down to the community being in the same place (idea-wise) at the same time you are. Make sure you’re there all the time, but don’t kill yourself doing it, you need an effort that can be sustained over the long haul…


LED lighting upgrade, the first light!

I’m really disappointed in LED lighting so far. The issue I have is availability still. Some of the best fixtures to convert (as far as being directional vs. omnidirectional) are the hardest to get bulbs for.

For example, my clip-on desk light that takes R14 bulbs (which are a very common bulb for such uses). Seems like a no-brainer LED conversion. Directional light. Low(ish) power (40w from the stock R14). Direct replacement LED bulbs available? Of course not! That’d be too easy! I’d even settle for a PAR14 (tighter beam) design LED bulb, that should be easier to make, for that fixture. The larger PAR bulbs are readily available in LED. Notably anything with the standard screw base… Just so happens that the common R14 uses the smaller “E17” screw base. So, we’ve got our major stumbling point identified.

What to do? Well, there’s plenty of LED bulbs in similar sizes to the R/PAR14, if you can accept the fact that they use some wonky 2 pin connector (technically the “GU10”). Not terribly helpful for me. I spent a good chunk of time trying to figure out a way to adapt a GUI10 to an E17. Rejoice as it is possible! Thanks to Bulborama (the ONLY place I’ve managed to find one), you can do that adaptation. There is the downside that completed assembly is taller. In my particular case, that’s acceptable though.

In the end, it took a tremendous amount of work (and way too much money) for what it is, but I finally have a working LED desk light!